A 46-year-old man from Madison, Florida, was indicted in federal court on three counts of possessing cocaine, possessing crack cocaine with the intention of distributing it and possessing firearms after a felony conviction. The defendant pleaded not guilty. The most serious charges he faces are the drug charges. His trial is set for May 2013 in Tallahassee, Florida.
If the suspect is convicted of all the charges, he could face a minimum sentence of 10 years to life on the drug charge, a 15-year sentence on the charge of possession of a firearm as a convicted felon, and a consecutive five-year term on the charge of possessing a firearm during a drug offense. His arrest was conducted by a joint task force made up of the sheriffs’ offices of Madison and Taylor counties, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and several federal agencies including the Drug Enforcement Agency, the United States Marshall’s Service and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Search and seizure rules are very strict, and lawyers may be able to investigate the circumstances of how the process was carried out by authorities. If the procedures were incorrectly followed, it may be possible to have the charges reduced or dismissed.
In Florida, individuals facing drug charges on the federal level may benefit from allowing criminal defense lawyers to review the cases. Knowledgeable criminal defense lawyers may explain rights and options to defendants and make suggestions on the best courses of action throughout the process. Federal drug charges carry heavy penalties such as long prison terms and large fines. The federal system is more difficult to navigate, but lawyers who have experience in defending people in federal court may help to make the process more straightforward for their clients.
Source: WCTV, “Madison Man Arrested for Armed Drug Trafficking,” March 6, 2013
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